Oklahoma Homeschool Science Fair

helping kids discover science and engineering

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Science Fair Tips

PHILOSOPHY Students learn best when they study subjects in the context of a personal or social application, and with hands-on instruction and activity-based experiences.

The scientific method or more recently referred to as scientific inquiry is what most educational experts feel students should learn through science. A science fair project takes students step-by-step through this process : State the problem, Gather information, Form a hypothesis, Test the hypothesis, State a conclusion, Report results.

All of these steps are covered in a science project. Students are more likely to internalize this process if they have to actually walk through it rather than simply memorizing the steps for a test. The project is extremely time consuming on the part of the student and the teacher but does provide students a hands-on opportunity to “demonstrate the skills necessary to engage in scientific inquiry.”

1.0 The Value of a Science Fair Project

2.0 Selecting a Topic

3.0 Scientific Methodology

4.0 Materials and Methods

5.0 Conducting Experiment

6.0 Data Analysis

7.0 Conclusions

8.0 Research Paper

  • Title Page
  • Table of Contents
  • Abstract: The Abstract is a short summary of the project and includes the key highlights of the experiment: purpose, procedure, and conclusions.
  • Question and Hypothesis: The question that they are trying to answer with their experiment. Be sure they clearly state their hypothesis at the end.
  • Review of Literature: Background information that reflects the knowledge they have acquired, through their research on the topic and for the experiment. They should be providing the reader with useful background information for their project.
  • Materials and Procedure (Research Plan): This is essentially the research plan. They should be certain to include a list of all materials that were used in their experiment and how they were used. It is best to present the procedure in steps and to include as much detail as possible about measurements and techniques in each step.
  • Results: A precise recap of what they found out in their experiment, focusing on their observations and data, leaving all interpretation for the Conclusion section.
    • Conclusion: A summary of their interpretation of the data and results of the experiment. They should restate the hypothesis and whether they found the hypothesis to be true or false. They should also comment on how the results of the experiment satisfied their original purpose.

9.0 Display Board
At the science fair, the display is the focal point of the project and contains all of the information about the project.

10.0 Engineering Projects
Scientists study how nature works; engineers create new things such as machines, programs, and techniques. Because engineers have different objectives than those of scientists, they follow a different process in their work.


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